USA / 135’
cast Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, Kristen Wiig
screenplay Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor
cinematographer Phedon Papamichael
editor Kevin Tent
production designer Stefania Cella
costume designer Wendy Chuck
music Rolfe Kent
sound Mark Stoeckinger, Patrick Cyccone, Tony Lamberti, Greg Chapman
special effects Michael Innanen
Alexander Payne - Downsizing
USA / 135’
Downsizing imagines what might happen if, as a solution to over-population, Norwegian scientists discover how to shrink humans to five inches tall and propose a 200-year global transition from big to small. People soon realize how much further money goes in a miniaturized world, and with the promise of a better life, everyman Paul Safranek and wife Audrey decide to abandon their stressed lives in Omaha in order to get small and move to a new downsized community—a choice that triggers life-changing adventures.
The last thing I want to write is a “director’s statement.” Antonioni used to protest, “Don’t you realize that anything I say will diminish, rather than enhance, your experience of the film?” So I’ll keep it brief. I make comedies, and this idea came from my co-writer Jim Taylor and his brother musing about how much better people could live if they were able to shrink—how big their houses could be in such little space, how cheap food would be, and so on. When I proposed to Jim that we treat the idea as a panacea for over-population and climate change, the premise soon revealed itself as a marvelous prism through which we could look at many things that interest, amuse and disgust us about the modern world. Now I’ve said too much.